What’s It Like To Be On The Other Side Of Me?

That’s the question our pastor recently challenged us to ask the people in our life. If you’re honest, that’s a pretty scary question to ask others. Why is it so scary?

  1. We assume the worst. – When we hear this question most of us will assume that people are going to tell us what’s wrong with us. The truth is we might just hear something good about ourselves that we didn’t know.
  2. We don’t want to hear anything negative about ourselves. – We think we can’t handle hearing the negative. The truth is that we have the opportunity to change when we face the truth of our shortcomings. It takes someone who truly loves us to tell us the truth! I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be surrounded by people who tell me only what I want to hear!

Why would we want to ask others a question like this?

  1. It will give us the tools to be a more effective leader. – When we begin to understand how we show up in the world, it gives us the power to be more influential.
  2. It will keep us humble. – God can use the humble in more ways than He can use those who are full of pride.
  3. It teaches us how to be relevant to others. – When we start to understand how others experience us, it shows us how to relate to more people. Paul talked about this in I Corinthians. I Corinthians 9:19-23 “19 For though I am free from all, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win more of them. 20 To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews. To those under the law I became as one under the law (though not being myself under the law) that I might win those under the law. 21 To those outside the law I became as one outside the law (not being outside the law of God but under the law of Christ) that I might win those outside the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all people, that by all means I might save some. 23 I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share with them in its blessings.” Some of the most effective leaders are people that are vulnerable and transparent. Others are able to relate to us on a deeper level when we acknowledge that we don’t have it all together or have all the answers.
  4. We remain teachable. – An effective leader must be teachable. If we think we know it all, we will have very little impact on those around us. Think about someone you know who appears to have all the answers. Do you relate to them? Do you feel encouraged when you’re around them?
  5. The truth will set you free! – In John 8:32 Jesus said, “and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” Many times we think we know ourselves better than others, but the truth is that many times we are deceived! One way to break out of the deception and become aware of the things that are really holding us back is to ask this question and take the answers to God. When we ask God to show us what’s important then we will be able to work on the things that He would have us change. This will speed up our personal growth by leaps and bounds and allow us to move into what God has for us much more quickly!
  6. It shows others that we value their opinion. When we ask this question we are telling others that we care about their feelings and we want to learn from them. This can go a long way to improving our relationships with others!

Who do you know that would answer this question honestly? What’s stopping you from asking this question?


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